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Nafcillin Side Effects Center
Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Nafcillin (Brand Names: Nallpen, Unipen) is used to treat many different types of infections, especially those caused by staphylococcus bacteria ("staph" infections). It is an antibiotic in the penicillin group of drugs. This medication is available in generic form. Common side effects include pain at the injection site if this medication is injected into a muscle.
Nafcillin is administered as an intravenous infusion. The usual I.V. dosage for adults is 500 mg every 4 hours. For severe infections, 1 g every 4 hours is recommended. Nafcillin may interact with cyclosporine, blood thinners, or antibiotics. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. During pregnancy, Nafcillin should be used only when prescribed. This drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.
Our Nafcillin Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What is Patient Information in Detail?
Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.
Nafcillin in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives, itching; fever, stomach pain, muscle or joint pain; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. A delayed allergic reaction to nafcillin can occur as few as 2 days to as many as 4 weeks after you use the medication.
Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
- diarrhea that is watery or bloody;
- fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms, sores in your mouth and throat;
- skin rash, bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;
- blood in your urine, urinating less than usual or not at all; or
- pain, swelling, tenderness, or skin changes where the medicine was injected.
Less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:
- nausea, vomiting;
- vaginal itching or discharge; or
- black or "hairy" tongue.
Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Nafcillin (Nafcillin Sodium)
What is Prescribing information?
The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.
Nafcillin FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
Body as a Whole
The reported incidence of allergic reactions to penicillin ranges from 0.7 to 10 percent (see WARNINGS). Sensitization is usually the result of treatment, but some individuals have had immediate reactions to penicillin when first treated. In such cases, it is thought that the patients may have had prior exposure to the drug via trace amounts present in milk or vaccines. Two types of allergic reactions to penicillins are noted clinically, immediate and delayed.
Immediate reactions usually occur within 20 minutes of administration and range in severity from urticaria and pruritus to angioneurotic edema, laryngospasm, bronchospasm, hypotension, vascular collapse, and death. Such immediate anaphylactic reactions are very rare (see WARNINGS) and usually occur after parenteral therapy but have occurred in patients receiving oral therapy. Another type of immediate reaction, an accelerated reaction, may occur between 20 minutes and 48 hours after administration and may include urticaria, pruritus, and fever.
Although laryngeal edema, laryngospasm, and hypotension occasionally occur, fatality is uncommon. Delayed allergic reactions to penicillin therapy usually occur after 48 hours and sometimes as late as 2 to 4 weeks after initiation of therapy. Manifestations of this type of reaction include serum sickness-like symptoms (i.e., fever, malaise, urticaria, myalgia, arthralgia, abdominal pain) and various skin rashes. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomatitis, black or hairy tongue, and other symptoms of gastrointestinal irritation may occur, especially during oral penicillin therapy.
Pain, swelling, inflammation, phlebitis, thrombophlebitis, and occasional skin sloughing at the injection site have occurred with intravenous administration of nafcillin. (See DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION.) Severe tissue necrosis with sloughing secondary to subcutaneous extravasation of nafcillin has been reported.
Nervous System Reactions
Neurotoxic reactions similar to those observed with penicillin G could occur with large intravenous or intraventricular doses of nafcillin especially in patients with concomitant hepatic insufficiency and renal dysfunction. (See PRECAUTIONS).
Renal tubular damage and interstitial nephritis have been associated infrequently with the administration of nafcillin. Manifestations of this reaction may include rash, fever, eosinophilia, hematuria, proteinuria, and renal insufficiency.
Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Nafcillin (Nafcillin Sodium)
Additional Nafcillin Injection Information
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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